Professor Seamus Perry

MA DPhil Oxf
Professor of English Literature, Massey Fellow, Tutor in English, Vice-Master (Executive), Fellow Librarian and Fellow for Charity Matters

Academic subject(s):

  • Core subject area: English Language and Literature; Joint Schools with Modern History and Modern Languages. 
  • Teaching: Literature in English from 1660 to the present, including the main period papers, 16601740; 17401830; 18301910; and 1900–present, and dissertations falling within that time. Graduate students working on Romantic, Victorian, and 20th-century topics.
  • Research interests: English Romantic poetry and thought, especially Coleridge and Wordsworth, and post-Romantic English literature, especially Tennyson, Browning, Eliot, Auden, Larkin, and their circles. I am editor, with Christopher Ricks and Freya Johnston, of Essays in Criticism: A Quarterly Journal of Literary Criticism; general editor of the 21st-Century Oxford Authors series; and general editor of the Oxford edition of the critical works of William Empson. I write for the London Review of Books, the Times Literary Supplement, and the Literary Review. Mark Ford and I have recorded numerous instalments of an LRB podcast about modern poetry in English called Close Readings. I have published most recently editions of the poetry and prose of Matthew Arnold and of William Empson’s Some Versions of Pastoral (both 2020). I am currently writing an intellectual biography of the poet Auden, and preparing a book of essays for Princeton University Press entitled Turning Verses

Departmental web page